Monday, January 30, 2012

Adventures in Amblyopia Part Four

These are my all time favorite photos of my son wearing his glasses.  They were taken 2 years ago by his Auntie while I was in the hospital having his little brother.  They still just make me smile.

Anyway.  Sorry for my self indulgence, there.  But Happy Monday!

When I decided that I wanted to start writing a series about our life with a small child in glasses, I asked a group of parents from the Little Four Eyes group on Facebook what FAQs they frequently received from others regarding their child in glasses.  I wanted to share a few!

1. Are those glasses real?!?
It's a bit strange to me that people would think we would put glasses on an infant or toddler just for an accessory to an outfit.  The hassle of glasses is so not worth it for them to be used just as a fashion statement.  Yes.  The glasses are real. 

2.  Why do they need to wear glasses?
Again...really? They need to wear glasses for the same reason anybody else does.  They have poor eyesight that needs corrected.

3.  How did you know they needed glasses?
That one is asked all the time.  In our case, as I mentioned before, I noticed one of his eyes slightly turning in towards his nose.  Other families may notice that their baby isn't focusing on items as they should.  Their child may show poor depth perception and continually run into items or trip and fall a lot. Some may already have a family history and made sure to get their child checked early.  There are a variety of different answers to this question.  The important thing is to get your child's eyes checked as early as possible, even if you don't think they have a problem!

4.  Will they have to wear their glasses forever?
That depends on each individual case.  In our case, we know there is a chance that he will not have to wear his glasses forever.  It's kind of a small chance, but it's still a chance. Will I be disappointed  if he does have to wear them forever? Not really. I mean, I would love it if I could stop wearing my glasses or contacts, but at this point, it's just kind of  a part of life.  No biggie!

5. How do they do an exam for someone that little?
That's a good question.  And I don't know all the medical/scientific stuff behind it, but I can tell you a few things.  First of all, the PO (pediatric opthamologist) has a light that they use to look at the child's eye.  The way that light is reflected back for the PO to see that tells the PO if there is a problem.  They do have eye charts, but not the typical eye char you're used to seeing.  In our case, they show my son a series of pictures and ask him to name the photos, and they repeat the process several times.  Each round the photos get smaller and smaller, which helps the doctor narrow in on his vision strength (ie 20/20).
sitting with little brother waiting for the PO to come in

Unfortunately, there are a lot of ignorant questions asked of people with children in glasses.  "Why would you do that to your child?", "Are you dressing your child up as a pirate?",  "Did they run into something and hurt their eyes?"...the questions are endless.  

If you are curious about a child in glasses, please, by all means please ask!  
We (as a group in general) are usually pretty happy to talk about our experience and help educate others. 

Next week I want to provide a bunch of different resources for parents who are new to this or others who are just curious and want to learn more.  I'll warn you now...I'm also going to be on my soap box about "nerdy" and "geek" clothing/items in stores right now.  BUT, I will provide some other shopping alternatives for cute items featuring glasses without the unnecessary labeling.

Have a great week! 


Anthony and Erin Mills said...

I understand. Liam has to have eye exams every 3-6 months. Because of his Juvenile Arthritis he is susceptible to a scary eye infection that is totally non-visible so we just have to have frequent check ups to see if there is any inflammation in the back of his eyes. He actually is just getting over having it. It's called uveitis. We had to give him eye drop steroids every freaking hour for a few months. It was hard. Especially to remember every hour, but we did it. He doesn't have it anymore. Thank goodness. Hopefully he won't get it again either.

Cassidy said...

My two year old son just got glasses today! One of his eyes was going crossed eyed. When we took him in we found out that he is far sided just like our 9 year old son. I was a little concerned about our 2 year old keeping his glasses on but I think he loves that he can see! Awesome post

Daydreaming Realist said...

This is a very informative post! I was so lost when I wanted to take my 3-year-old to get glasses. His eyes were turning in and he kept squinting all the time. The Dr was amazing!! He was able to do the eye exam just as you described--through a light & equipment. It's time for us to go back for another appointment, but I definitely understand how prescribing glasses for small children works, now. I never thought about blogging about this, but it really is a great idea. I'm a huge advocate for educating people. I love to learn, as well. have a nice day! I'm following you on Twitter, GFC & FB from #WeekendBlogWalk. Daydreaming Realist


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